Anniversary, Video — June 22, 2014 at 4:14 pm

Watch: Jimmy Somerville re-records Bronski Beat’s ‘Smalltown Boy’ for 30th anniversary

Jimmy Sommerville 'Smalltown Boy' 2014

Thirty years ago this month, synthpop trio Bronski Beat released its career-making single “Smalltown Boy” — and to celebrate that milestone, the group’s lead singer, Jimmy Somerville, has recorded a haunting new stripped-down version of the song, which you can hear below via a live-in-the-studio video or purchase on iTunes and

According to a post on Somerville’s website:

“June 2014 marks a very special anniversary — 30 years since the release of Smalltown Boy. Originally released in 1984, the song addressed key issues in 1980’s LGBT culture, and brought homosexuality and homophobia into the pop mainstream. The song deals with loneliness, rejection by family and society and also being bullied because of supposed differences. The song has been and continues to be an inspiration to many people. It has also inspired so many, varied cover versions and been celebrated musically worldwide, as you may have seen from the recent videos posted on Jimmy’s Facebook page.”

And if you missed it last year, check out this video of Somerville surprising a busker singing the song.

Below, hear the new “Smalltown Boy” (via Waist High) and see the video for the original 1984 single.


Jimmy Somerville, “Smalltown Boy” (Reprise 2014)


Bronski Beat, “Smalltown Boy” (1984)



  1. I think I might like this more than the original. Wow.

  2. He can still hit them high ones!

  3. Lonnie T.

    I’m gonna have to go with the original on this one.

  4. Tylerroy2000

    Wow, wow, wow!!!!

  5. StephanieD

    Just a poignant and beautiful and heartbreaking as the original.

  6. Steve Crawford


  7. Scotty Peterson

    Wow, still sounding amazing!!

  8. Jennifer Griffin

    What a hero. Spine-tingling truthfulness as poignant and powerful today as when I first heard it as a confused and frightened 14 year old 30 years ago. Thank you for this iconic piece of art.

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